Full Time
80:00
6:00pm Fri March 12, 2021
Round 1 - McDonald Jones Stadium - Crowd: 19555
80min

FULLTIME :: Knights run out convincing winners tonight 32-16.

78min

Some scramble from the Knights there! Dogs spread it on last, the kick inside sees two Knights collide then an inside pass sees Sione Katoa lose it under the power of Waston. NO TRY.

77min

Conversion: Bulldogs
Kicked by Kyle Flanagan.

Flanagan from the right. He studies, nails it.

Knights lead Knights 32 - 16 Bulldogs
76min

Try: Bulldogs
Scored by Dallin Watene-Zelezniak. Kick to come.

DWZ dives over after another good move.

Knights lead Knights 32 - 14 Bulldogs
73min

Penalty Goal: Knights
Kicked by Mitchell Barnett.

Barnett lines up his seventh of the night. Nails it.

Knights lead Knights 32 - 10 Bulldogs
70min

PENALTY KNIGHTS! Pearce collected after he kicked.

68min

PENALTY KNIGHTS! Push from the Dogs attackers. Silly stuff.

66min

Dogs have persisted with the bomb tonight. This one almost bites them as Hunt goes for a run. The pass from Watson is wide though. Let off for the Dogs.

63min

Dogs haven't been quite as incisive this half. Knights shut down their attack and it was a soft kick to end the set.

61min

Dogs get their first set restart just after the hour mark.

60min

CAPTAINS CHALLENGE! Knights don't agree with the lost ball. Hymel Hunt the offender. Another good call from the players. SUCCESSFUL. Knights ball.

59min

Knights pulling out the trickshots now. Pearce kicks for his winger and the ball juuuust beats him over the touchline.

57min

Dogs hand it right back, again.

57min

Sauaso Sue drops it trying to promote the ball.

56min

Conversion: Knights
Kicked by Mitchell Barnett.

Barnett from the left again: he puts it right over the middle.

Knights lead Knights 30 - 10 Bulldogs
55min

Try: Knights
Scored by Bradman Best. Kick to come.

Knights straight off the scrum. It goes to Best and he powers over.

Knights lead Knights 28 - 10 Bulldogs
54min

DWZ tried to scoop it up without looking. Knights get it right back.

53min

Big let off for the Dogs then they hand it right back.

52min

Pearce goes the pressure route. He dabs a kick behind the Dogs and Allan has to tap it dead. Dropout incoming.

51min

PENALTY KNIGHTS! Holding down. Knights look prime to finish the Dogs off here.

49min

Knights are just cutting through the Dogs with ease! Jayden Brailey started the work with sharp work through the middle. Bradman Best goes close then Jacob Saifiti is caught.

48min

Conversion: Knights
Kicked by Mitchell Barnett.

Another easy assignment for Barnett. He raises the flags.

Knights lead Knights 24 - 10 Bulldogs
47min

Try: Knights
Scored by Daniel Saifiti. Kick to come.

Dan Saifiti goes bang again! Another short ball sees the 100-gamer just stroll over.

Knights lead Knights 22 - 10 Bulldogs
46min

Dogs have given away five set restarts thus far and now, Averillo again, trying to find a spark loses it in the strip.

43min

Both teams have got through their sets to start this half. Dogs have kicked dilligently and trapped Hoy twice.

40min

KICK-OFF! Here we go!

40min

We're back for the second half here! Dogs trail by eight, handling was their big issue. The Knights were also sloppy but showed some finesse to end the half. Can they keep it up and reverse the trend against the Dogs in the Hunter.

40min

Conversion: Knights
Kicked by Mitchell Barnett.

Barnett has a chance to convert his own effort just before half-time. He splits the upright. HALFTIME.

Knights lead Knights 18 - 10 Bulldogs
39min

Try: Knights
Scored by Mitchell Barnett. Kick to come.

Beautiful pass from Watson to find Barnett. He held it up enough and the backrower rampaged through to extend the Knights lead.

Knights lead Knights 16 - 10 Bulldogs
37min

Corey Allan has been solid under the high ball but he drops that one under pressure. Knights can finish the half on top.

32min

Conversion: Knights
Attempted by Mitchell Barnett.

Tougher assignment for Barnett this time. Right side touchline. He misses.

Knights lead Knights 12 - 10 Bulldogs
32min

Try: Knights
Scored by Starford To'a. Kick to come.

Knights finally make them pay on the right side. Good shape from the Knights and To'a dives over.

Knights lead Knights 12 - 10 Bulldogs
31min

Dogs drop it again in their own half. Allan latched onto an offload and drops it.

28min

Kurt Mann cannot continue. Connor Watson comes on to play in the halves. Pearce and Hoy combine with the latter throwing it forward. Let off for the Dogs.

27min

Nick Meaney goes up to pressure Bradman Best and rips it free. Another set coming for the home side.

26min

The bell tolls twice for the Dogs and the Knights have a chance to hit back.

24min

Mann is still retrieving treatment. Pearce gets caught on the fifth and it was down to Mitchell Barnett to grubber into the Dogs hands.

24min

Time off. Kurt Mann is hit hard and is down clutching his ankle.

23min

Ogden backed in the tackle and drops it. Another big chance for the Knights.

22min

Dogs let the kick-off bounce again! Luckily, Adam Elliott is there to pick it up!

21min

Conversion: Bulldogs
Kicked by Nick Meaney.

One miss and Nick Meaney takes over. He slides it over.

Bulldogs lead Knights 8 - 10 Bulldogs
20min

Try: Bulldogs
Scored by Adam Elliott. Kick to come.

Good quick play-the-ball from the Dogs. Elliott makes up for his miss earlier and spins over.

Tied up at Knights 8 - 8 Bulldogs
19min

Another fantastic kick from Averillo. The Knights scrambled to ground it before Nick Meaney could pounce.

17min

Averillo weighted that perfectly and Hymel Hunt is trapped in-goal.

17min

Dogs try to use the width tonight. It went right then left and Adam Elliot's late offload is called knocked on. Jake Averillo got up right away and asked for a challenge! Here we go. CHALLENGE SUCCESSFUL! It came off his knee. Dogs ball.

16min

Oh dear. Hymel Hunt made a mess of the kick-off. He knocked it back first then dragged it forward. Big chance for the Bulldogs now.

15min

Penalty Goal: Knights
Kicked by Mitchell Barnett.

Barnett steps up again, sporting some claret as well, doesn't affect his goal-kicking. Flags raised.

Knights lead Knights 8 - 4 Bulldogs
14min

PENALTY KNIGHTS! Push from the Bulldogs. They have been stuck down this end. First a six again, now the penalty. After some debate, looks like they'll go for two.

13min

PENALTY KNIGHTS! Dogs offside from the scrum. Tap and go.

12min

Been an unhappy start for Cotric in blue-and-white. He tried to crab across field and the ball popped free.

9min

Conversion: Knights
Kicked by Mitchell Barnett.

Mitch Barnett keeps it inside the posts.

Knights lead Knights 6 - 4 Bulldogs
8min

Try: Knights
Scored by Daniel Saifiti. Kick to come.

Lovely work from the Knights there. Pearce takes it to the line, sends it to a rampaging Daniel Saifiti who was celebrating as he strode over the tryline.

Tied up at Knights 4 - 4 Bulldogs
7min

Knights have responded here. They jammed up on Cotric and forced it loose from the centre.

5min

Conversion: Bulldogs
Attempted by Kyle Flanagan.

After supplying the pass, Flanagan has the kicking duties. He lines it up well, but it doesn't straighten.

Bulldogs lead Knights 0 - 4 Bulldogs
4min

Try: Bulldogs
Scored by Dallin Watene-Zelezniak. Kick to come.

He slipped, he slides and he fell over the tryline. The Dogs just can't get enough of that opener. Lovely pass from Averillo who held it up well and found the flying winger.

Bulldogs lead Knights 0 - 4 Bulldogs
3min

Again, Flanagan kicks early in the count. This one gets a result though, it came off a Knight so it was six again.

2min

David Klemmer with the first error. Adam Elliott dug under the ribs and forced it loose.

1min

Kyle Flanagan kicks early in the count but it got caught in the wind. Knights have a seven-tackle set.

KICK-OFF! It is teeming down in the Hunter. Bulldogs have first use and let the ball bounce!

Here come the Bulldogs. They get a terse reception from the sell out Newcastle crowd. The rain has also arrived with some superb timing. Go Hard, Go Knights rings from the speakers and following that is the Knights. There is a huge roar around the ground when the red and blue emerged from the tunnel. Here we go! Friday night footy is a go!

Happy Friday everybody! It's been a long off-season, we got a small morsel last night down in Melbourne but now, we kick off the season with our first doubleheader! Newcastle played finals for the first time in years last season and now the novocastrians aim to build on it with new signing Tyson Frizell straight into the side. They will be without superstar Kalyn Ponga but there is plenty of hope in the steel city tonight. For the visitors; it is a new era under Trent Barrett. New signings Kyle Flanagan, Corey Allan and Nick Cotric all make their debuts this afternoon. 2020 was another in a string of terrible seasons for the blue-and-white side. They do hold a formidable record in the Hunter and the dogs will want to bark to start the season.

Referees & scorers:

Referees: Ben Cummins

Touch Judges: Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski, Kasey Badger

Video Referee: Alan Shortall

NEWCASTLE KNIGHTS (32)
Tries: Daniel Saifiti (2), Mitchell Barnett, Starford To'a, Bradman Best
Conversions: Mitchell Barnett (4/5)
Penalty Goals: Mitchell Barnett (2/2)

CANTERBURY-BANKSTOWN BULLDOGS (16)
Tries: Dallin Watene-Zelezniak (2), Adam Elliott
Conversions: Kyle Flanagan (1/2), Nick Meaney (1/1)